The African Forest Forum (AFF) participated in a consultative forum on current practices for sustainable land management programmes, practices and policies in Africa. The meeting was held on January 22, 2014 in Nairobi, Kenya
More than 30 participants drawn from government bodies, research institutions, extension and civil society groups and international organisations attended the meeting. Participants were taken through key presentations on sustainable land management practices blended with case studies mainly from Kenya and which elicited rich discussions on the subject.
The AFF representative underlined the need for better coordination and a result-based approach on SLM in Africa.
This initiative will be implemented by Sustainable Environmental Development Watch (SUSWATCH) Kenya, which is the focal point for the Anglophone African civil society organisations engaged in the Regional Sustainable Land Management programme of TerrAfrica, under the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).
Participants highlighted key issues that need to be taken into account if the initiative is to succeed, key among which is effective coordination of key activities. It also emerged that land use institutions had not been involved and should be included in subsequent meetings as they are key players in this process.
In addition, delivery of research results emanating from the initiative must be prioritised; hence the need for a well-established research – extension liaison office for efficient delivery of research results to farmers. Some of the challenges likely to hamper effective implementation of the projects were also mentioned. Key among them includes financing of CSO working on SLM and gender mainstreaming. Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) is coming up in the SLM discourse.
Participants recommended that CSOs be engaged in documenting best SLM practices and share them with all stakeholders. There was also a felt need to compile and share information on all actors involved in SLM in the country.
The coordinator of SUSWATCH Kenya agreed to hold further discussions with AFF on this matter, in addition to exploring how the two organisations can collaborate on areas of mutual interest.